Iran faces an increase in unexplained natural disasters

A 5.9 magnitude earthquake struck Iran’s southern province of Bushehr this morning, which is home to a nuclear power plant. There were no immediate reports of casualties or damage. That said, many houses in rural parts of the province are made of mud bricks, which have been known to crumble easily amid natural disasters across the Islamic Republic. The semi-official Tasnim news agency reported that “The quake hit the Kaki area in the province this morning,” while adding that the quake was felt in Bahrain and some other Gulf states – indicating the significance of the quake, which was reported on a depth of 18 kilometers.

Iran has been facing an increase in natural disasters in recent months, including a severe drought across a reported 96 percent of the country for the past 87 months, as well as a massive sandstorm that reportedly swept through Yazd province, located some 270 kilometers southeast of Esfahan. The ISNA News Agency reported that “Ten people were injured as the sandstorm passed through the province.” The meteorological organization of Yazd province released a statement, saying “the storm had a wind speed of up to 102 kilometers per hour,” yet stopped short from providing additional details.